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Use Your Mornings Well

Lesson 3 from: What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast

Laura Vanderkam

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Lesson Info

3. Use Your Mornings Well

Lesson Info

Use Your Mornings Well

we are going to be talking about a time of day that I really think is key to making work and life work. And that is, of course, our mornings. Right. What we do before breakfast, what we do first matters. So what we do before breakfast or as I always say, before the rest of the world is eating breakfast? Because, personally, I like to get up and eat. We don't need to starve ourselves. But what we do before breakfast sets the tone for the rest of the day. And in some ways, that might be a slightly scary thought. Because if you think about how many of us spend our mornings, there may be a wee bit of room for improvement. So I want to find out what before breakfast means for everyone watching this and listening to us. So those of you at home, will you please send in What time you woke up yesterday? So what time you woke up yesterday? Send that in and everyone in here stand up. We're gonna stand up again. So I'm gonna ask you to sit down for certain wake up times, so sit down. If you got up...

this morning after eight. Probably no one. Because I saw you all it. Eight. Sit down, if you will. Cut between 7 30 and eight. 77 6 30 and seven. Six and 6 5 30 and six. Five and 5 30 Hopefully. What time were you up for? 30. Ah, my goodness. Well, before breakfast is a long string of time. Is that is that a normal? No, that was sorry. There's the microphone. But was that normal for you today was not normal. What's that? What's more of a normal way? Like 10 30 11. 10 11 Oclock today was definitely different. Cheryl, how about you? You were up there for a while. Yeah, I got up at five today, but I typically wake up between four and 5 30 Okay. Why don't get out of bed. You don't have in the let the cat out, but, um, I tend to wake up that early. I'll get up for a little while, then I'm tired and go back to bed. Yeah, and then get up around, get up around eight. But where you were, dogs actually got them. I usually wake up around seven, but We woke up a little bit earlier today. I actually had to get them up. It was a very different morning for me. Okay. Typical came to see me this morning is not gonna be not gonna be typical. Uh, Diana, pass it back. What time are you normally up? I'm normally about 6 36 30 What time do you normally start working? Well, I have to drop off. All the kids are the kids. We learned that she had four Children. Report also by about 8 30 Yeah, I tried toe. Try it. Start. Start the day. So she's she's got 6 30 to 8 30 there. Right? So mornings actually take quite a bit of time. They really do in between the time we wake up and the time we often start work looking at people's time logs. I mean, it can It can literally be, You know, two hours easy to ours is actually fairly short. Three hours. There's a pull from the National Sleep Foundation that found that the average person for different age groups, but wakes up around 6 a.m. And I think most of us probably start work around eight or nine so that's 2 to 3 hours in there. All right, 2 to 3 hours is kind of a long time. It's a big chunk of the day at three hours. That's an eighth of the day, just sort of culminating in the sound and fury involved in getting out the door. Even if you have a bit of a commute in there, it's still is still a lot of time, and, you know, it's kind of often a maddening time. In many ways, mornings are a bit of a madcap time in many households. If you're trying, get everyone ready. I know they certainly are in mine. When I the mornings I showed in the previous session were a bit more calm, despite my waking up and trying to get back to sleep. But they were a bit more calm than then They were when I was writing parts of this book, so I was first writing about what the most successful people do. Before breakfast, my kids were four to in a newborn and a couple mornings per week. It was my responsibility to get the four year old on the two year old to their preschools. They went toe to separate preschools. And it was just amazing how the morning would inevitably devolved into this comedy of errors like lining up three Children. Okay, have you all eaten? Are you all dressed in something that could possibly be shown to the rest of the world? Has everyone had their diaper changed or gone potty? Let's check that because that was a thing thing that could quickly send us back in the door. Keep us from going outside. And just as I would be about to strap three kids in their car seats lined them up in the background. Somebody would throw a fit over something like being forced to wear socks, right? It would be something that I did not anticipate and be something new every time, and that would set everyone else off. And so by the time I actually got back to my desk and actually started work for the day, I really just wanted to sit there and drink my coffee and pays like little is telling us. And, you know, sometimes I wanted to drink something stronger. How's that for 8 a.m. In the morning? So over the years as I've been studying how people spend their time. I've had hundreds of people keep track of their schedules for me, and I can see that I am not the only person who finds mornings difficult to use. Well, we have the best of intentions. May we really dio right? We have great ideas for how our mornings are going to go, and but the problem is we get home from work at night. We do what we do off the television comes on. Let's say a television comes on eight or nine and it stays on. It stays on for a while. Maybe for some people, it's Web surfing, but that's what they spend their evenings doing. I've seen time logs, words, video games. We all have our different Elektronik vices. But many of us turn to them in the evenings, and everything about these electronic devices is designed to keep you hooked. The television. You're always trying to figure out what's gonna happen in the next show and what's gonna happen after this commercial or you're on the Web. There's a 1,000,000 links to something. That's who I want to see. The 10 photos of Britney Spears. Next thing you know, you've lost another half hour down that rabbit hole on, of course, video video games. How are their own problems? So this goes on for a while. Eventually you have to stumble the bed. You're tired. You have to go to bed eventually. But then we set alarms for times that often reflect a life that we are not actually living. The alarm goes off in the morning. You hit snooze again. Sometimes even again. There is nothing more miserable than sleeping and nine minute increments thought this goes on. Eventually we haul ourselves up. But now, of course, we're late or racing, trying to get everyone out the door, go through our day and battling traffic, have phone calls and meetings and dealing with difficult people. Battle the traffic back home. If you've got kids, your wrangling them through dinner, maybe homework, bath bed. You go through it, I'm exhausted and TV comes on right. Web surfing commences whatever it ISS, and the cycle starts all over again. But not everyone's life looks this way. There are people who exercise on a shockingly regular basis. There are people who have very serious jobs who spend a lot of relaxed time with their families during the workweeks. There are people who think beyond the day to day firefight and actually spend time planning and strategizing about their businesses and about their careers. And the funny thing is, these people all have the exact same 168 hours as everyone else. Their jobs are no less demanding, and their Children are no less likely to refuse to wear socks. Or at least I think so. Maybe that's just my little angels who refused to wear their sex. These people make things happen. They make important things happen because they get up and they do them first. So they do this little magic trick, really almost think it. It is like a conjuring magic trick where they take unproductive evening hours that time. We all spend puttering around and watching television watching other things, and they cut it off. They get to bed at a reasonable time, and they turn this unproductive evening hours into productive morning hours. They switch the time around, they get up and they get stuff done, and I started seeing this on enough time logs. I'd see it on time. Logs of CEOs and politicians and a lot of people in busy lines of work like this. And when I asked, people basically said, This is the time that I have for myself during the rest of the day. Other people want stuff from you, right? Particularly fair in this sorts of lines of work, the day gets away from you as other people's priorities invade and obviously it. Sometimes that's work. But it's also people's priorities at home, right? The priorities of people that you love dearly and share home with can also get in the way of things you want to do. But in the mornings, if you're up early enough, you got a better shot that no one wants anything from you. So that makes mornings perfect for getting things done. Seizing your mornings is the equivalent of that sound financial advice to pay yourself first before you pay your bills. I'm sure you've heard this that you know if you pay yourself first before you pay your bills, you managed to save. If you wait until the end of the month to save what is left over. Shockingly, there's often nothing left over, and likewise, if you wait until the end of the day to do meaningful but not urgent things like exercise Read. Pray, ponder how to advance your career, grow your organization or truly give your family your best. It probably won't happen if it has to happen. It has to happen first, right? So that's our phrase to remember from this session last session, we learned that I don't have time means it's not a priority in this session. We're remembering that if it has to happen, it has to happen first. And I saw this on enough time logs. I thought, you know, I should really right about that. I should write about using our mornings. Well, so a couple years ago, I wrote a block post that was called what the Most successful people do before breakfast and was surprised. It got kind of a lot of reeds. So I wrote more about it, any book about it, and then that e book morphed into this longer book, and I looked at you know how productive people used their mornings and what we can all learn from them, because I really do think we can learn a lot in our frenetic world. Mornings are what stand between us and kind of complete chaos. But even a few minutes of strategizing before the rest of the world wakes up can make each day seemed full of possibility, like an adventure rather than a slog. So in the course of this workshop, we're going to envision are perfect mornings, our perfect morning routines. And we're gonna come up with some strategies to make those mornings a reality. And I hope by the end I will have convinced you to consider crossing over to the lark side drum roll. Because I will be here all day books. I really will be here all day. Seriously, Way will be here way. I kind of slow convert to this one. I think we had a lot of people up early here. How many of you consider yourselves? Morning, people. We got a couple of people who are morning people. People who say I am not a morning person. Okay, A couple people, not a morning person. Yeah, I am not a morning person. And that's sort of funny talking about mornings. As much as I have been talking about mornings in the past few years, people assume that I must be a morning person I wouldn't review of my book even accused me of rising every morning at 5 30 to greet the rosy fingered Dawn. Like, you know, if you knew me, you know what finger Iberia greeting 5 30 with in college. I worked a couple of late night jobs. I like studying them to even even worked overnight shift at the student center. I would be at the at the security desk all night. I really liked studying during that time. But the problem is the world is not set up for night owls. It isn't if you do your best work at one AM but you have a regular job. You're gonna look pretty lousy in that 8 30 a a meeting that your boss wants you to be there for, and it's unfortunate, but it's true, and you're probably gonna wind up being judged on that. Or even if you opt for self employment, which many of us have done, there's still the little Matal or the little matter of family members, right? Little kids wake up at dawn. They should tell people this right there of one of her videos. They show teenagers to scare them out of getting pregnant. They should just tell them you will never sleep past seven AM again. Uh, so you know, having little kids has forced me to be more of a morning person than I otherwise would. But as I have made that switch somewhat reluctantly, I've realized that there's some riel benefits. There's some new research into the science of willpower and energy and focus that is showing that difficult tasks are simply easier to do when the day is young. So it's just somebody just recently shared ah, white paper with me. It's from two researchers who are associated with Johnson and Johnson, and they tracked people's energy levels through the course of the day, and they actually hit their peak right around 8 a.m. So right, when you come into work, you sit down at your desk with your coffee. Statistically, you are ready to take on the world, right? That is, when we have our game face on, we're ready to go. And then you look at the how they monitors people's energy levels through today, and it did this nice little long curve going down pretty predictably through the course of the day, somewhat depressing Lee. Even when people came home to their loved ones, it was way down low. Eso there's the you know the morning is when we have the most energy. Or some of you may be familiar with Roy Boom Istres work. He's a professor of psychology at Florida State University, and in one famous experiment, he asked people to fast before coming into the lab and then in the somewhat sadistic twist, I guess I don't know if you need to be somewhat of a state us to be a psychology researcher. He put these hungry people in a room with freshly baked chocolate chip cookies and radishes, and some of the people could eat what they wanted. Some of the people could only eat radishes, so after this, he had them work on some unsolvable geometry puzzles. This is just one of these things researchers due to see how long people were persist in a task there unsolvable and the people who could eat what they wanted. So who could eat? The chocolate chip cookies pretty much worked for about 20 minutes before they gave up the people who were sorely tempted by the chocolate chip cookies. But could only eat the radishes worked for eight minutes before they gave up. So that is a huge and statistically significant difference and how long they were willing to persist. And what they took from this from this experiment is that we have a limited supply of willpower, right? We only have so much, and if we push it too far, we push it too much. Try to keep ourselves from eating those chocolate chip cookies. When we're hungry, we simply use it up. If we use our willpower on one difficult task, it is less available for other difficult tasks, and we have one supply. So in the course of the day spent battling traffic, dealing with difficult people or even just making decisions, we deplane it. Our willpower is depleted, and if you think about it, this makes sense. Diets tend to be broken in the evening, not in the morning. You seldom hear of crimes of passion occurring at 6 a.m. But after a good night's sleep, when we wake up and we eat something again, it's before the rest of the world is eating breakfast. Not before we are eating breakfast. We're able to bring our best Selves to bear on whatever we choose to focus on. We are even more optimistic. There was one analysis of Twitter feeds that found that people are more likely to use the words super and awesome between six and 9 a.m. Then, at other times of the day. So I remember there's apparently nothing super awesome about 3 p.m. To back. So successful people when I found it did is they harness that early morning willpower that early morning optimism, and they use it for things that matter rather than things that they don't. And they use their morning burst of willpower and energy and focus on important but not urgent things on those big rocks we talked about in the last session on the important things. They put the big rocks of their day on the calendar first, and they often put them first thing in the morning because they know that if you wait until the end of the day to do important but not urgent things, your supply of will power will be used up. You won't be able to do it. You'll find yourself on Facebook doing nothing more important than figuring out whether it's OK to hit like on a friend's description of a crummy day, or if that's not something you really like, and you should leave a comment instead. So remember, if it has to happen, it has to happen first. But if you build a good morning habits, though, if you build good morning habits, you can score daily victories While the rest of the world is hitting snooze, you can make progress toward a full life toward the life that you want. So what are the best morning habits? Well, you know, you could make a morning habit out of anything that you want. Really? I suppose if you wanted to watch TV first thing in the morning, you could make a habit out of that. You could schedule a 20 person conference call about office office fridge policies during that first precious 30 minutes of the work day. You couldn't do that. But if you recall from our last session we talked about the three areas of core competencies, right? You remember these. We can nurture our careers, we could nurture our relationships and we can nurture ourselves. And hey, what a coincidence! These are all great things to do in the morning. All of these are important but not urgent things. That life has a way of crowding out. So I want to give you some examples of how people found space for each of these in their morning routines. And I also want you to be thinking about what you could be doing in each of these categories as part of a morning routine. So first nurturing your career. Uh, Debbie, who's one of the people I interviewed for? For this book? Debbie is the head of a program in health care education at a university, and she was working on changing a lot of things in her program. And so as part of that, she had an open door policy with her team. Is they come in, talk to me at any any point? And she shared her time log with me, and she noted that there were certain things that were frustrating to her. Namely, she kept getting interrupted, should work a few minutes on one thing and then, you know, should have a conversation with someone. She work a few minutes on another thing and you know, on one level, as a manager. These few minute conversations with people were incredibly important. But since she wasn't getting anything done other than these chats, she was kind of feeling like she was spending her wheels and that made her crabby when people dropped in to see her. And in case you're wondering, it doesn't really work to have an open door policy as a manager, if you then act unhappy to see the people who are walking in your open door. We've been passive aggressive. It doesn't work. So what to do? Well, the solution that we came up with actually lay in this quirk of her personal life. So she was a water polo bomb. Her teenage daughter played water polo and those of us who may have teenage kids, you know that a lot of high school sports you meet before watersports particular, you meet before school starts to practice. And so her daughter often had to be in the pool before seven AM so that we would get up, should take her to practice and then often should come back home and watch television. I don't watch morning shows or hang out. Sometimes you go into work. But she'd sit there and clean out her inbox should spend that time cleaning out her inbox. Seeing what came in deleting stuff Well, I pointed out that there was lots of other times she could clean out her inbox. Maybe in between those chats, people came in during the course of the day. Email, like housework kind of expands to fill the available space right so she could do that during the day. But no one was staging drive by meetings at 7 a.m. Shockingly, no one wanted to come into her office at 7 a.m. So that was time that she could use for her big rocks. Well, she agreed to try it on A few days later, she was sold, she said, I'm doing more before breakfast than I used to dio in a week. I think that's probably a wee bit of exaggeration, but she was finally doing things that had lingered on her to do list for way too long. So using those morning hours for focused work before you get into that email firefight before you get into those drive by meetings, that is a great way to nurture your careers in the morning but there's lots of other things you can do to to use your mornings. For professional purposes, You could have networking breakfasts all right, often a little bit more focused than networking. Happy hours if you've got a day job, but you want to do something creative, you want to write a novel. You want to compose a symphony, you wanna paint. You could do that first thing right? You can do that in the morning. In the morning. You can be whatever you want to be. You don't have to answer necessarily to your boss. You don't have to fit what your job description says. You can be whatever you envision, as one young woman has said to me every day I have a job. But in the morning, I think I have a career, right? So take a moment and write down one career boosting task, one career boosting thing that you'd like to tackle regularly. But you are not making space for that. Maybe you could use your mornings for what could you do in the morning to nurture your career? Write these down people at home. Please write these down to the second thing. The second thing that we can use our mornings for is nurturing our relationships, right? That's number two, really investing our time and our family, our friends and so somebody who really showed that to be when I first had Katherine keep a time log, she's actually, too. In my book, she's in 100 68 hours, and she's in what the most successful people do before breakfast. But when I had to keep a time log for me, she was a lawyer at a major firm, and she also had a two year old daughter. And she was feel feeling a wee bit unhappy about the whole situation because she was having a hard time making at home in the evenings on time to spend much time with her daughter, right? She had a firm where people often worked a little later, and so she was having a hard time seeing her daughter as much as she wanted. But when we looked at her time log, we saw that while Catherine was up early with her daughter, right kids wake up at the crack of dawn. She tended to do a lot of puttering around. During this time. She do kind of inefficient housework. Let me start a little Andre. Let be empty. The dishwasher. Our She was doing that, a checking email. And when she got to work, there was even more puttering, right? So she'd grab a coffee. Should check personal email should read the headlines. How many of us do that? We sit down at work like, Oh, let me see what happened in the world. I want to be an informed person. It'll still be there at 4 p.m. You could be an informed person at 4 p.m. But so should sit down and do this. It wasn't billing hours, so there was quite a gap of time in the morning. She was not really using. And so we said, Well, maybe we can rethink this time. Maybe you can get yourself ready. Wake up with your a few minutes before your daughter get yourself ready. Then when your daughter gets up, focus completely on her. Spend that hour that 90 minutes at home really engaged with her. Leave for work a little bit later. You're not doing anything when you get there, leave for work a little bit later. Spend that time with your daughter and recognize that it's happening and ask what you want to do with it. Do you wanna play games with it? Do puzzles read? Stories play around in the yard? And so it turned out that they wanted to do all of the above. So she started reading together their daughter, and they would even cook breakfast together. Anyone's tried to cook with a two year old. It's a wee bit of our production. It's more about nurturing the relationship than getting breakfast on the table. In that way, no matter what time Katherine came home in the evening, she was more relaxed because she already had that quality time with her daughter. First, she had done it first, so she wasn't racing out of work, missing something important. She should have been there for it. Work only to get home to put her daughter in bed, have her daughter fall asleep five minutes after she gets there. So she's feeling guilty cause she's not doing her best at work or at home. She could know that she had that time first, so no matter what time she got home, she'd already done it. Remember if it has to happen. It has to happen first, so there's lots of other ideas for nurturing your relationships. In the morning, you can have date breakfast instead of date. Night Mornings are also good for meeting upto. Walk with friends. You can commute with a spouse or friend. Turn this wasted time into fun time, Right? We talked about that in the last session. So look at your paper again. Write down one activity you could do to nurture your relationships in the morning. And finally, the third thing Weaken Dio is to nurture ourselves. Exercise is a huge one here. I can tell you that almost everyone I see who has, ah, sort of regular job, a normal job and who consistently exercises does it in the morning. And there's just certain logistical reasons for this. You only have to shower once, right? Shower after you exercise, you only have to do it once on. And also there's just logistical reasons. I mean, a meeting isn't gonna run long and keep you from getting to the gym. As a triathlon coach once told May, there's always gonna be a reason to skip a 4 p.m. workout, and it's gonna be a good reason to. It has to happen. It has to happen 1st 1 of the most fascinating people I interviewed for this book is Steve Reineman, who is the former CEO of Pepsi. And he told me that he had run four miles at 5 a.m. Pretty much most mornings of his life. So he'd stay in hotels with treadmills and he would get up and he would do it there. That was how he fitted in. But beyond exercise, you can use the morning for all sorts of other things that nurture yourself. You could use it for spiritual practices. Lots of people wake up and do some sort of devotional in the morning as a way to start their mornings off, right or even just have me time. How often do you say I don't have enough me time? Well, get up in the morning and do it. One CEO I wrote about was in a diner at around 4:35 a.m. Sitting there with a big coffee and a couple papers is the one time he could read the newspaper and peace. No one wanted for anything from him. At 5 a.m. so he loved that me time. So, looking back at your paper, write down one thing you could do to nurture yourself in the morning. One thing you would love to do to take care of yourself that you're not doing enough off. So hopefully, if you've been following along, we now have three high impact, important things that we're looking at. One thing that might nurture our careers. One thing that might nurture our relationships and one thing that might nurture ourselves. I'm sure looking at that sounds wonderful and inspiring, and you're looking at it right? And then there's really life, real life where the kids are refusing to wear socks. But fortunately, there is a five step process for making over your morning that we're going to work through now, five steps. We're gonna envision what are perfect Morning is going to be, and hopefully try to make some of it a reality. So step one, track your time. In session one, we talked about keeping a time log. This is a record of how you're spending your time. You write down what you're doing as often as you remember and as much detail as you think will be helpful. And so obviously, if you want to make over your mornings, you need to keep track of your morning. Look at what your mornings tend to look like. Now try to be honest about it. But don't just look at your mornings. Remember what I told you about about that magic trick that successful people do about turning evening hours into morning hours. Often the solution to morning dilemmas lies in the night before. So people say I can't get up. Seven, get up at six and still get seven or eight hours of sleep. I'm just not a morning person, But if you look at your time log, you notice that the reason you're staying up late is well, you like to watch late night comedy shows. All right, maybe got a thing for Jon Stewart. I enjoy watching Jon Stewart, but the thing is, Jon Stewart can be t vote. Jon Stewart set your DVR, record him. You could even watch him in the morning on the treadmill. Right? Get up and watch him on the treadmill. You can go to bed. You may diagnosis, um, serious puttering in your evenings and you may start to think. Well, how can I figure out a way for me and anyone else you're lucky enough to have in bed with you to get yourselves into bed a bit earlier, which has various upsides, By the way, you know it's nice to go to bed together when you're not exhausted. You can set a bedtime alarm hopefully and get into bed. So step one is to track your time. So try and think through what a normal week day morning works. Looks like for you. Maybe we started this in the last session when you're keeping track of your time, but you can try to reconstruct it. Think through what a weekday morning looks like for you. Be honest. If you're hitting the snooze button three times, good to know you can figure out what to do about it. We'll talk about that in a minute. Step two picture the perfect morning. So in session one, I had to create a list of 100 dreams that's broadly about things we want to dio. So you could look at that. You think Well, maybe there things in there I want to do in the morning or we can look at these three things we just wrote down. Maybe their things in there you want to do in the morning activities that would nurture your family, your career yourself. Look at that list. Do you think he could incorporate one to or maybe three of those into a morning routine? So I want you to sit there and think about what you're perfect Morning would look like. Start writing down what you're perfect. Morning would look like people at home. I want you to send in what you're perfect Morning would look like. I post that in the chat rooms. Want to see what some people's perfect mornings would look like. And while you're doing that, I will talk about mine. So here's mine. I would be up at 6 20 to be out the door at 6 30 for a 45 minute run. I'd be home at 7 15 drinking my coffee as the kids wake up. My magical world they know to be happy when they're waking up. Exactly at this time, they're also wearing their socks way. All have family breakfast together. It's a gorgeous family breakfast that I have not actually cooked, but it's here. We have this amazing family breakfast. My sitter comes. It comes to work at eight. I start working on a book that I'm really excited to be writing about. So I'm spending the first hour of my work day working on a book that I'm excited to be writing all my sentences. Air coming fabulously. It's coming along perfectly. So that's my perfect morning. So hopefully you all have been writing down. What? You're perfect. Morning. Looks like Do you have anyone who wants to talk through with us? What? They're perfect Morning would look like, Yes. You putting those yoga pants to work, OK, because I get in the morning and I dress and I have this, like, I'm going, you know, I'm gonna go get my workout in, and then I get sucked into the work. Yes, ago. And so you're perfect. Morning. Would the yoga pants would be? Yeah, And then I pick my kids up and I'm thinking they all think I went worked out today. Great. So you're perfect. Morning would start with a workout with with yoga. Wonderful. Wonderful. What time would it start? Well, not yoga. Okay, Some sort of work out some sort of work out, but you don't know which one? Some sort of work. All right, Something perfect world. It doesn't matter. Something you want to describe. Their perfect morning. Yes. So this is funny. It's all about my dogs in the morning. However, one of my things to get in for myself was to do some sort of physical activity before, sit down on the computer and start writing. Um, and I always end up sort of yelling at the dogs like Sure, Mommy's trying to write, you know, Um, but I and I never get their walks in. Who would do a walk with the dog? Which would get my exercise? Yes. And my dogs time. And they're always really tired after a walk and just sleep the little sleep. So what time would you be up with the dogs walking? Oh, probably. Um, 6 36 You think about sort of a route? Is there anything pretty cool route Neary you around the block? There are things like sniffing all the interesting things that you know are wonderful morning exploratory walk thing Exploratory. That's not too far. So I can actually do it on to think too hard about getting in the car. Going number specific. Like I know that about myself. It needs to be easy. Great. So you're perfect. Morning is a walk with the dogs. We've gotta work out. We've got walk with the dog. Have any others. We wanna pass it down. Charles Will, Mine would be actually getting up consistently. Same time every day. I'm so I'm not burning the candle at both ends. But also, I'd like Teoh alternate between a workout in and just reading rating because I have a pile of books that I end up having to cram to finish before they're back. Due back to the library or back to ever I borrowed them from. So I'd like to finish those things, but I don't want to work out every day. And I don't want to read every morning. So I'd like to balance balance that to read and work out and then actually take a shower before I go check my email. We have big dreams. Way have big dreams in this session. We want a shower before email. That's our perfect morning. What are we getting it coming in from online? Yeah, lots of lots of notes on Children and keeping the kids calm. We have here, Mad Panda says. My perfect morning morning. I'd be up about 6 30 or seven. Go outside in the cold, crisp air and play fetch with my Wiener dog breakfast. Get some exercise, come back in and design some nice things for my dream brand. Then head to work. Cool. That's great. We have any other teacher, Good stuff says about their perfect morning. Get up at 5 a.m. Go for 30 minute run breakfast with boyfriend, then out the door. It's 6 15 for morning commute. Get to cafe at seven to work on my career stuff before actually going toe work. Oh, I like that one. She's breaking up her morning, right that the commute will happen, probably at a time that there's less traffic. And then she has that time to brainstorm about her career at the cafe and then starts her her real job. So that would be a great morning. She'd have a workout time with boyfriend time thinking about the career. It's perfect. I love it. So there's lots of things you can dio in the morning that would be in these categories, we could just call out a few of them. I mean, there's writing in a journal, writing part of a novel, reading sacred texts, reading great works of literature, doing projects with your kids, reading with your kids, having a date with your spouse, planning your life in your career, reading industry publications for the industry that you would like to be in, not the one that you are necessarily in at the moment, uh, meditating all sorts of great things that we can do in the morning. So I encourage you to keep thinking about this question and compare your mornings with sort of other people's perfect mornings, right? Ask your friends and family. What would your perfect morning look like? Because we can't make it ideas right? Like that one about going to the cafe, starting the commute but not going straight to work after the commute, having that time in between where you think about your projects first, before you're thinking about your bosses projects so that first initial burst of focus and energy and willpower is on your projects on your career, right? Not necessarily your organization. You want to give your best your organization. But you're also focused on your career long term too. So you come up with all sorts of great ideas as you're doing this. Well, now we need to think through the logistics, right, Because we have our perfect, brilliant shining mornings, and we have our current lives. And sometimes these may be a bit difficult to mesh together. Sometimes they're not. I think we had very doable dreams in here. We heard from from people. I mean, I think you could get up and go for a walk with your dogs. I think that could happen. Uh, that that could be reality. But sometimes our mornings are a little bit more difficult. So I told you that my ideal would be to get up and exercise in the morning first thing before my kids get up. But I'm often parenting solo during the week, so my husband travels a fair amount for work. So I'm the only adult in the house during that time. So that seems logistically to be a bit of an issue, right? So there's often often issues we have to think about, and so we think through at what might have toe happen in real life in order for these things to happen and a couple things to think about first question, everything. You're doing. All right. Look at your real life, what you're normally doing in the mornings and question how long everything takes on whether it really needs to take that long. So I found a few logs where people are waking up, but for 30 and then it's taking them 90 minutes to get showered, dressed and do their hair and makeup. Wow, 90 minutes. That kind of seems like a lot of time. If you're not actually the morning anchor of a television show that that kind of seems like a lot of time. Maybe you could compress that. You know, maybe you could spend less time on that, and then you'd have another hour to sleep or another hour to do something else. You know, if it takes you that long to do your hair, maybe you need a different haircut. Alright. One that works with you instead of against you. If it takes you that long to get dressed because you hate your clothes, maybe you need some different clothes, right? If you don't know how to buy them. Maybe you can find the stylist who could buy them for you Or a friend who has much better fashion sense Didn't have her help you pick them out. Or maybe you have great close, but you don't know how to put them to gather. So you're sitting there in front of your wardrobe every morning. I don't know what where? I don't know what to wear. Well, maybe you could get someone to come in and make a look book for you. Right? These are the accessories. And these are the shoes that go with this outfit. It's all you have to do is look at the picture, put it on, follow directions, put it on, walk out the door. So question everything you're doing and how long it takes. Next thing, the question question what you are doing for other people, right? What time do you really need to be to work? What time do you want to be at work? We saw with Catherine that she wasn't necessarily doing anything when she came into work. Maybe you come in two minutes before your boss because you've learned over the years that if you want to keep your job. You should be there when your boss is there, right? You leave after your boss leaves. Well, that's an interesting idea. There may be other ideas that work to, and if you think about it, may be your boss is upset that you're there because she wants the place to herself for half an hour before the workday starts. You think about Debbie and our story earlier? She'd be kind of ticked off if her poise started showing up at 7 a.m. To be there when she was there. She wants the place to herself. So question what you're doing for other people. Question what you're doing for your kids, right? That's part of the morning routine, too. I'd see a lot on time logs that parents air, maybe making lunches for their kids in the morning that that was taking a lot of time in the morning. Say, Well, why is that? Because you enjoy making lunches. Well, that's great. Is it because you think that a good parent makes lunches? Well, could we question that? I'm sure you could find many awesome parents who send their kids with lunch money to school you might find awesome. Parents have taught their kids how to make their own lunches, right, bringing up that value of independence and self sufficiency. So question what you are doing for other people.

Class Materials

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Ratings and Reviews


Listening to the free on-air version. She's got a good presentation style - nice to get someone who doesn't have the "ums" and "uhs" every other sentence. She's engaging but also delivers good content. It's not the same old time management stuff: she's got realistic ideas and innovative suggestions. I like the way she refers to published research, too.

vol leo

This class was amazing! A must for anyone that's at a stand still in life! Awesome!


This is a really useful class. It's pretty involved but you walk away with a useful plan for how to more effectively start your day.

Student Work